WeightWatchers Research



As the world's largest commercial weight loss operation, WeightWatchers has been the subject of more scientific research than any other program. Here are summaries and links to the most reliable sources: published & reviewed evidence collected by medical researchers around the world:

2005 Comparison of the Atkins, Ornish, Weight Watchers and Zone Diets for Weight Loss and Heart Disease Risk Reduction. This study concluded that there was no significant difference in the amount of weight lost by any of the diets over a 1 year period. Unfortunately, the number of dieters involved was too small to give conclusive results as to which diet would give the greatest weight loss or which program was easiest to stick to. However it should be noted that amongst the trial group, Weight Watchers was the program that was most closely adhered to, suggesting it is fairly easy to follow.

All weight loss and health experts are agreed - the best diet is the one that you can reliably stick to.

The sample group (albeit small) showed that WeightWatchers clients were third out of four for overall amount of weight lost, but came out best in terms of waist measurement reduction, blood pressure reduction and reduction in triglycerides.

To see the full report, click here...

The British Medical Journal's "Randomised controlled trial of four commercial weight loss programmes in the UK" which was conducted in partnership with the BBC for its "Diet Trials" program:

This study compared the effectiveness of the Weight Watchers Points Plan (aka the Flex program in US), Atkins Diet Revolution, Slim-Fast Plan and Rosemary Conley's Eat Yourself Slim Diet. The study focused on weight lost and body fat reduction over a 6 month period with around 60 people using each diet. Once again Weight Watchers had the lowest number of drop outs from the program, with 47 of the 56 starting participants reaching the end of the trial.

The results in terms of weight loss over the 6 months put Weight Watchers in third place (although only by a very small margin), behind the Atkins and Rosemary Conley Program. For full information, click here ...

Interestingly the study also followed the participants in the 6-12 month ranges as well and Weight Watchers moved into second place (to the Rosemary Conley Plan) in terms of weight lost. Weight Watchers participants who completed a full 12 months on the same program continued to lose weight, waist circumference and body fat, albeit it at a vastly reduced rate.

The Atkins Diet which recorded the greatest initial weight losses actually saw participants who claimed to be sticking to the program gaining weight after the 6 month period. To see the full results, click here ...




In a paper in the Journal of the American Medical Association, entitled: "Weight Loss With Self-help Compared With a Structured Commercial Program" which was sponsored by Weight Watchers, researchers confirmed that structured follow (such as offered by classes or one-to-one coaching) does indeed improve your chances of significant and sustained weight loss.

This may seem like a statement of the obvious, but it finally answers the question of whether a coached program is of greater value than a "home made diet" with instruction at the beginning.

In the study two groups of around 200 people were either given a two 20-minute counseling sessions with a nutritionist and some self-help materials or a full on WeightWatchers program with weekly classes. The results were that after one year the average weight loss on the WeightWatchers was more than three times greater (9.5lbs vs. 2.9lbs).

Click here to read more...

IN CONCLUSION:
Researchers assess WeightWatchers as a solid, nutritionally-sound program. What comes out from the studies is that in general people find it a fairly easy program to stick to, with better ratings in this department than other programs.

The WeightWatchers points are a simple way of restricting your calorie and fat intake. They have stood the test of time. The only improvement I can suggest on the plan is to use low-carb and increased protein foods - focusing particularly on vegetable based proteins as part of your points allocation. For information and a case study of one of my clients who did just this to achieve absolutely spectacular results, click here...

For the U.S. WeightWatchers Official website, click here...

The UK WeightWatchers site is here...





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